Rotherham United’s Academy battled their way back from being two goals behind to earn a 2-2 draw as they hosted Grimsby Town at Roundwood on Saturday.
A flurry of second half goals saw the Mariners establish a comfortable advantage with Luis Adlard and Lennon Stead finding the back of the net, before the Millers, who have gained a reputation for their fighting spirit of late after comebacks against the likes of Preston North End and Scunthorpe United found replies from Wilfred Peel-Evans and Jerome Greaves.
The hosts started the brighter of the two outfits in the Saturday meeting in South Yorkshire, but were unable to find a way through a resilient Grimsby rearguard as first half chances came and went for Toner’s side.
Adlard and Ayodeji Owoeye responded with attempts of their own as they looked to break the deadlock but neither really threatened the Millers goal.
It would remain the case that the scoresheet stayed clean until after the restart, when chances were more frequent for both sides.
Persistence finally paid off for Grimsby and Adlard, when he skipped beyond a couple of red shirts before firing home the opener which would pave the way for another Mariners player to follow suit soon after.
After Joe Starbuck had been upended in the penalty area, it was left to Stead to try and take advantage from 12 yards and he obliged, doubling the visitors’ advantage.
With 10 minutes left on the clock, Toner’s youngsters halved the deficit as Peel-Evans found a way through to make it 2-1 and give his side hope of a late comeback.
The revival was then completed six minutes later and four from time, when Greaves, who has been absent from recent fixtures with an injury, announced his return to action with an important goal to earn his side a share of the spoils in the Youth Alliance League encounter.
Millers | Farrar; Hanley (Millen 78), Hull, Spence, Smith; Hodgkinson, Scott, Kenny, Peel-Evans; McGuckin (Wenham 78), Greaves.
Unused | Ellis, Gateshill, Salah.